An official website of the United States government
Here's how you know
A .mil website belongs to an official U.S. Department of Defense organization in the United States.
A lock (lock ) or https:// means you’ve safely connected to the .mil website. Share sensitive information only on official, secure websites.

Lt. Gen. McDew's letter to Airmen

  • Published
  • By Lt. Gen. Darren McDew
  • 18th Air Force commander
Gen.As I reflect on 2013 and prepare for an even more exciting 2014, I realize that our Air Force, Air Mobility Command, and I have asked much from you and your families this year. However, despite the challenges of a changing world and often great uncertainty, you have been a model for operational excellence ... and enabled our Nation to solve problems and triumph across the globe.

To the Airmen of our great, global mobility enterprise: Thank You!

Without a doubt, you are essential members of the world's finest joint team and simply put, I am extremely proud of you.

As we celebrate the holiday season and welcome a new year, I encourage you to take some time to focus on two very important responsibilities that often get neglected: taking care of our fellow Airmen, ourselves, and our families. People, not money, machines, or programs are the lifeblood of our rapid global mobility enterprise. Airmen give the mission meaning and your well-being and that of your families underwrites our strength.

Enjoy some quality time with your loved ones, recharge and get ready to tackle the challenges 2014 will no doubt bring ... challenges that we will overcome with the same bold leadership, excellence, and pride that remains the hallmark of Air Mobility Command and the Mobility Air Forces.

However, as you are relaxing at home or traveling to visit family or friends, please don't forget your wingmen and the members of our extended Air Force family. This time of year can be a difficult time for some who may be wrestling with personal issues. Make sure you let each Airman in your care know that they do not have to carry a heavy burden on their own.

This time of year can also be a time of hazards and increased mishaps. Whether you are hanging lights on the house or planning that long road trip, take into account the associated risks and build a plan accordingly. I want you to be safe in all of your holiday activities and I want you to stress safety with your wingmen before you leave the workplace. I want you all to return from your leave healthy, happy, and primed for 2014!

I also ask you to set aside a moment to remember our fellow Soldiers, Sailors, Marines, Airmen and Coast Guardsmen who are spending the holiday season away from their families in places far from home. If you can, do something for their families. I'm sure our deployed members would also appreciate you keeping them and their loved ones in your thoughts and prayers.

To those serving in harm's way, I extend my deepest appreciation and wishes for a successful deployment and for your safe return home.

Finally, Evelyn and I thank you and your families for your continued service and for all you have and continue to do for our Air Force and Nation. Be safe, have a Happy Holiday season and I look forward to serving with you in 2014.